I am writing to express my extreme disappointment of the lifting of the mask directive for all students and staff in Mathews County Public Schools. I applaud the votes of Desmond Smith and Lorraine Forrest to retain the mask mandate. There are several reasons that their votes should have carried the majority.
First, only 10 days ago, Mathews experienced the highest number of cases of Covid in one week since the beginning of the pandemic (Gazette-Journal, Jan. 20, 2022). Since the population of Mathews is far from fully vaccinated (61.3 percent as of Jan. 23, 2022, Virginia Department of Health), our students are vulnerable to the highly transmissible omicron variant.
“Face masks, combined with other preventive measures, can help slow the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19 … If you are in an area with a high number of new COVID-19 cases, the CDC recommends wearing a mask indoors in public or when in close contact with unvaccinated people” (Mayo C...
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